Murphy's Irish Red - Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited

Not Rated.
Murphy's Irish RedMurphy's Irish Red

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321 Reviews
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Reviews: 321
Hads: 647
Avg: 3.18
pDev: 23.58%
Wants: 7
Gots: 61 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited visit their website

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 321 | Hads: 647
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.54/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Thin foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, and a slight hop aroma. Taste is much the same with a toasted bread flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a pretty good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is nothing all that special, but it is solid and easy to drink.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.15/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: single finger head on a copper-amber clear body and scant lacing.

S: very sweet aroma from the caramel malts. burnt toast notes.

T: less sweet than was expected from the aroma. otherwise this one is simple with grain, caramel malts and toasted notes.

M: slight bitterness affects the drinkability. medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: standard for the style but little that sets it apart from the mainstream irish reds.

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.08/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes.

Poured into a pint glass. The color is a moderate amber with an off-white head. The nose brings some light biscuit and caramel malt along with a touch of earthy hops. A very slight floral character as well. Taste is mostly some light bread and toast with a bit of bitterness that comes through in the finish and helps add at least a touch of complexity to this. Otherwise, pretty plain.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.08/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer poured out as a pretty nice looking red color. The head was white and fizzled away not leaving a lacing because. The aroma was mostly malts and other grains. Not much hops in there. The taste was smooth and was full of caramel malts. The mouthfeel was a little thin and wasn't as interesting I was hoping for. Overally I was a bit disappointed with this brew.

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Photo of brentk56
3.09/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a nice head that provides good lacing

Smell: Vague hints of sugar water solution

Taste: Starts out with a slightly tart unbaked dough flavor that builds in a grainy direction, mid-palate; after the swallow, the bitter flavors disappear and are replaced with....nothing, nil, nada; after the finish the grainy flavors reappear, however

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with fizzy carbonation

Drinkability: Not my favorite style and not a good interpretation

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.88/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not my favorite style, but I'll take the exception from this good brew. Other than being a safe beer with little standout characteristics, there are very little to frown at. A solid caramel malt flavor that hinges slightly on maple syrup flavors and toffee. Lightly bready, but mostly toasty and nutty. Low butter-popcorn flavors. These characters come out in the aromas and subdue into the flavors and expecially the finish. Lightly malty finish keeps from becoming as clean as desired, but still a fine beer.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.06/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer sure looks the part before the crown is cracked. Good looking thick-necked bottle with an impressive red, green, cream and gold label. It doesn't look too shabby after the pour either. Pristine orange-copper with a large, light beige head that's more firm and rocky than expected. Scraps of lace are starting to stick and I'm left with a respectable partial coating on the inside of my glass.

The nose is unimpressive. Lightly toasted malt/grain with a faint, indescribable off-aroma. The flavor doesn't impress either. Caramel malt and scorched grain with an unpleasant bitterness and faint metallic notes. The not-all-that-pleasant melange of flavors deflates into a watery muddle in fairly short order, resulting in a brief finish. The body is closer to light than to medium and there's isn't much in the way of carbonation.

On re-reading, the beer isn't quite as bad as my description would suggest, but it definitely didn't live up to my expectations; which weren't all that high to begin with. Average at best.

Murphy's Irish Red reminds me of a redhead who fails to make the finals of a beauty pageant: decent looks but utterly without substance, and a bit too nasty to be in the running for Miss Congeniality. Now, about that tall brunette who's a Phi Beta Kappa...

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Photo of zeff80
3.23/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Poured out a red/burgandy color with a foamy, off-white two-finger head. No lacing.

S - It smelled of malt and that's about it.

T - It tasted of malt, clove and grains.

M - It was soft and smooth. A light-bodied beer.

D - An okay red beer. Not as good as Murphy's Stout.

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Photo of oberon
3.57/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rich,deep amber color with a light to medium head,aroma is malty and toasty.Flavor ismalty but not quite sweet enough in my opinion with some decent toasted malt elements.I think a better than average amber ale, when I want a good amber I would definently buy this one.

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Photo of nickfl
3.36/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Ample, slightly off white head that settles quickly, but leaves good lace. Copper color with good clarity.

S - Toasty, biscuity malt aroma with a hint of smoke. No hops.

T - Toffee and caramel maltiness with a sweet, grainy flavor in the middle. Caramel and roast malt with mild bitterness in the finish. Slight diactyl.

M - Medium body and carbonation with a moderately dry finish.

D - The aroma is a bit weak, but the flavor is spot on for the style. Overall, it is quite drinkable but I can't say I really liked it; something about the balance of the malt character is just kind of unpleasant.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.38/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 12/31/06 at The Celtic Pub in Pawtucket, RI, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a dark amber color, with a thin white head that fades very quickly and leaves almost no lace on the glass.

S: I had trouble picking up much of a smell, but there’s a little caramelized malt and tea.

T: Taste is light and malty, with flavors of caramel, tea and a touch of hops. Leaves a faint after-taste. Just like the smell, the taste isn’t very strong.

M: Smooth and very crisp, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Not very flavorful, but easy to drink and not too filling, it’s a good beer to pound if macros are your only other choices.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
3.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Never saw this one at the package store until recently so gave it a whirl.

Eh, nothing too great here. Not as good as Sam Adams or Hooker in terms of the style as this one is kind of boring. It's light bodied and easy to drink which gives it alot of points though. Some caramel malt can be detected but not too much.. a decent beer but nothing great.

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Photo of kojevergas
2.73/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I lived in my home - Galway, Ireland - for nine months. I vowed to do me best to try every Irish beer that existed. I succeeded largely, but a few select brews escaped me: 8 degrees brewing, because it's new; Guinness exports like the Nigerian one, and Guinness Red; Biddy Early's brews, because it closed down; and this beer, Murphy's Irish Red. I even searched Cork for this beer, but found no luck. If Abbott's Alehouse in Cork didn't have it, and the Porterhouse(s) and Bull & Castle in Dublin didn't have it, where could I possibly find it? The answer ended up being Berlin, Germany, in the specialty (laden) beer shop. I had to leave Ireland to find this Irish beer. Go figure.

I served this 33cl bottle in a Guinness pint glass ('borrowed' from the King's Head pub in Galway), in me friend's gaff in Berlin, Germany, the very day I purchased it. Temperature was about 10 degrees celsius, though the bottle label recommends 5-7 degrees. It was summer in Germany; what was I meant to do? Reviewed live.

A: A decent upward bubble show - somewhat rare for an Irish red. Six finger head of nice cream and decent thickness. Good retention, about four minutes or so. A copper-amber colour. Semi-transparent. Quite appealing.

Sm: Amber malt/hops, some cream, maybe even some slight ester hops - but I doubt it, as esters are rare in most macro Irish brews. Very slight hints of caramel and maybe even some nut. Pleasant and light in strength. No alcohol comes through.

T: Irish red me arse. Nuts pull through like a sweet light English brown ale (not surprising Murphy's should emulate English styles, the bastards). Some amber malt/hops enter in to a lesser degree, but don't quite resolve to the climax as the nuts do. Hoppy but limited to a simple barley foundation. Built poor for the [alleged] style, but decently for a lighter brown ale. For once, beeradvocate didn't screw up the beer categorization! The brewer did. (By the way, Killian's is not an Irish red either, and Irish reds are not widely consumed in Ireland with the exception of Smithwick's).

Mf: Smooth and wet, with limited coarseness on the climax. Not akin to an Irish red per se, but matching its true style. Refreshing enough I'd say.

Dr: 5% ABV is concealed - not that that's a difficult feat to accomplish. It refreshes on a Berlin summer's day, but would be better served a bit colder. Perhaps the label's advice was sound. It's a decent beer, but I understand now why we don't serve it in Ireland: none of the lads would give a shite. Very affordable in Berlin. I think it was something like two euro.

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Photo of smcolw
3.56/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Large head that settles in a rocky fashion. Relatively light (spotty) lace on the glass. The color is deep, dark amber. Clear.

Rich caramel aroma--moderately sweet. Light hop background. Only distraction is a metallic note of iron.

Like a classic Amber Ale--big, semi-sweet crystal malt beginning, plenty of biting hop in the swallow. The aftertaste is short-lived, though. The flavor is not multidimensional. Good body, high carbonation. This is a good beer when other micros may not be available.

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Photo of superspak
3.58/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled on 4/29/2013. Pours slightly cloudy deep orange/copper color with a 2 finger dense and rocky off white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of caramel, toast, brown bread, raisin, plum, pear, apple, light chocolate, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with well balanced bready malt, fruity yeast ester, and light hop notes; with solid strength. Taste of caramel, toffee, toast, brown bread, raisin, plum, pear, apple, light chocolate, herbal, grass, and yeast earthiness. Minimal earthy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of caramel, toffee, toast, brown bread, raisin, plum, pear, apple, light chocolate, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a short bit. Nice flavor balance and solid complexity of bready malt, fruity yeast ester, and light hop flavors; with solid robustness and no cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and light-medium bodied; with a very smooth, crisp, and lightly creamy/bready mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish as expected of 5%. Overall this is a very solid Irish red ale. Nice balance and solid robustness of bready malt, fruity yeast ester, and light hop flavors; and very smooth and crisp to drink. A pleasant and enjoyable offering.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
2.86/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

"Brewed according to Irish tradition to offer you refreshment with an easy to drink speciality beer taste" boasts the label. We'll just see about that, won't we?
Pours a clear, reddish hue with full froth atop.
Aroma: rather sweet and soft, rather akin to the smell I associate with typical lagers, though, and come to think of it, the label doesn't call it an "ale", just "beer."
Fairly mild arrival on the palate, flavorful at first, then fast fading, with an utterly insignificant finish. No hops anywhere, but tasty, caramelly malt sweetness and a hint of fruit. Very light bodied, with little texture, no impact on the palate at all, really.
Although not bad in any way, this is a frightfully forgettable beer, one of those you want when you don't want to know that you're drinking beer. Terribly dull, but a notch above that Killian's stuff you see everywhere you go.

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Photo of chinchill
2.99/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Distinctive brown bottle (with different label than on BA), emptied into a pint glass.

Crystal clear brown beer, leaning more towards orange than red, and topped by a generous if short-lived tan head.

The aroma and taste are a bit odd but seem familiar. Examining the label I see this is a Heineken product, then it hits me ... this tastes a lot like Heineken, at least a lot more than an Irish red ale should. Only the slightest skunkiness here, until the finish; less than a typical US bottle of Heineken. There is a much strengthened and improved malt profile, again in comparison to a standard Heineken lager.

Decent mouthfeel with good carbonation. Medium body, Semi-dry finish.

O: So what we have here is something more like a (Heineken, if there were one) amber than a traditional Irish red. Frankly, I think Coors (Killians) makes a better Irish red.

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Photo of jwc215
3.5/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours copper with a bubbly off-white head that fizzles down and eventually disappears.

The smell is caramel with mild earthy spiciness.

The taste is of caramel, slightly toasted, and grainy. It has an earthy, slightly floral-ish, tea-like dry touch balancing mild sweetness in the finish.

It is light-bodied with ample, though not excessive, carbonation. Pretty smooth.

Sweetish, but balanced... A decent, standard, Irish Red.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.56/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear dark reddish amber in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation rising quickly from the bottom of the glass and some golden yellow highlights. The beer has a three finger tall dense foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a couple of medium sized thick patches surrounded by a thin film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of toasted and caramel malts with a lighter aroma of earthy hops.

T: Upfront there is a moderate to slightly stronger than moderate flavor of toasted, caramel, and bready malts with very light hints of sweetness. That is followed by light flavors of earthy hops which contribute a light amount of bitterness which lingers slightly.

M: Medium bodied with slightly heavier than moderate amounts of carbonation. Crisp.

O: Very easy to drink and enjoyable but not anything overly special - I could easily have a couple of these in a session but it will not likely find a regular place in my fridge.

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Photo of WesWes
2.9/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

The beer pours a golden/amber color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is average. It has a weak malt scent that I guess has pale and light crystal malts. It seems like there are some adjuncts as well along with lager yeast. The taste is average as well. It is a bitter beer with some maltiness, but not much. It is dry and watery. The mouthfeel is decent. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This beer just sucks. It has terrible aroma and taste. It's one and done for me.

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Photo of Gavage
3.26/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear copper in color with a short 1" head that last a while. Light lacing develops during the session.

Smell: malt sweetness is single component in the aroma of this beer.

Taste: malt is up front with a touch of nuttiness and very mild bitterness. Your tastebuds will get bored with this after a while.

Mouthfeel: smooth throughout. Medium bodied. Very brief lasting malty sweetness sticks to the tongue after swallowing.

Drinkability: a dull and boring session beer. Better on tap than in bottle, but still not one I long for.

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Photo of Billolick
2.76/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce can, "brewed according to Irish tradition" in Holland! Go figure...Pours clear and the expected reddish shade of amber. Light tan frothy head, with decent retentive powers exhibited. Leaves creamy, medium bubble extensive lacing. Nose is some sweet malt, and alot of sulpher. Light bodied brew, mostly just sweet malt picked up, low hopping levels. Slight sulpher again picked up. Metalic, cabbadgy off flavors present, make this a forgetable beer and surely not one to seek out with much effort.

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Photo of DoubleJ
2.92/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The canned version doesn't start off promising in flavor (comparable to the tap version I had some time ago), but given some time to warm up, it becomes a more palatable beer with less astringency. I choose this beer for St. Patrick's day when I was at my friend's house, though the irony is this is brewed in Holland by Heineken. Nothing impressive, just a decent mass producd red ale.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.29/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On nitro-tap at Beachwood BBQ for St. Patrick's Day,

A: Pours a light red with a full creamy nitro head, nice lace.

S: Caramel, hint of earthy hops.

T: Good caramel/toffee malt type flavours. Light hopping. Solid beer, but I wanted more.

M: On the thin side, creamy, light-bodied.

D: A fair Red Ale. I liked it, but it's not a beer to wow you, just an easy drinking pint.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
2.73/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Murpheys Irish Red

Pours pale for the style, a pale orangish gold. Decent foam and lace. In the smell, grainy, lightly floral, kind of macro-like. In the taste, a one dimensional malt sweetness, grainy bite, ghost like hop bitterness and a more or less clean finish. It is a lighter bodied ale, similar to some english ales, but rather bland.

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Murphy's Irish Red from Murphy Brewery Ireland Limited
74 out of 100 based on 321 ratings.